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New Jersey Extends Public Health Emergency for 30 More Days: Will Casinos Ever Reopen?

New Jersey is one state in the US that is still under state at home restrictions. This order will remain in place for an indefinite time frame as the coronavirus continues to be a public health threat. Just yesterday, Governor Phil Murphy extended the public health emergency status for an additional 30 days. As the virus continues to be a threat, the casinos as well as other non-essential businesses remain closed, with no sign as to when reopening may occur.

Fighting for Public Health

According to the governor, the state is following the data, science and the facts in order to fight to protect the public health from the coronavirus. Whether residents like it or not, the governor feels the state has to do what is right, in a safe and responsible manner.

Lockdown restrictions are easing across the US but New Jersey is not backing down. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that the US has not seen a decline in new cases of the virus for more than three consecutive days as a country. In New Jersey, the state is proving that social distancing works. At one time, the state had seen 11 days of declining cases. However, that number has increased over the past few days.

Once the restrictions are eventually lifted, businesses like casinos will have to find ways to keep customers as well as employees safe. Will consumers feel secure in setting foot outside their homes? Will employees be willing to go back to work while there is a chance that they could catch the coronavirus?

What to Expect at Atlantic City Casinos Upon Reopening?

Once casinos actually are back up and running in Atlantic City, many people are wondering what to expect. Casinos will have to meet certain standards and guidelines in order to offer services. It is unclear what these guidelines will be. Unlike Nevada, New Jersey gaming regulators have yet to provide an outline for what will be required.

If we can assume that the Atlantic City casinos will be functioning in a similar manner to what other casinos are planning, there are several factors we can expect. One being that the casinos will limit the number of people allowed inside. Capacity might be set at 50% or less in the beginning as the phased reopening takes place.

Masks have become common place in the public, so we may see casinos require patrons and employees to wear masks at all times, at least while in public areas. The casino floor may also be reconfigured to provide more space in between players. It is expected that slot machines will be turned off at random or moved around the space to allow for players to have six feet of separation while they gamble.

Machines and surfaces will need to be cleaned at regular intervals and hand sanitizer stations will most likely be prevalent once again as they were before the closure. Cashless transactions may also be pushed to avoid the handling of money in the gaming facilities.

For the number of coronavirus cases to continue to go down, the state will need to continue to practice social distancing. Once businesses start to reopen, consumers as well as employees will need to continue to wash their hands, wear masks when possible and social distance. If everyone does their part, then hopefully things can get back to normal sooner rather than later.